A California federal judge halted President Trump’s most recent executive order with a temporary injunction, according to news agency reports. The order would allow the federal government to withhold funds from “sanctuary cities” that refused to comply with its present immigrant law priorities. Judge William Orrick struck down the government’s argument that the order did not overreach beyond presidential powers.
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to set aside a nationwide temporary restraining order, noting the original executive order was unconstitutional. The most recent order was drafted with prior failed legal battles in mind, and temporarily stopped the U.S. refugee program and stops visa issuance from six, instead of the previous nine, predominantly Muslim countries. The new ban does not apply to anyone who holds a green card or was already issued a visa. Other changes include removal of language preferring Christian minorities from major Muslim countries.
The most recent loss for the Trump administration has to do with the president’s order on withholding funds from sanctuary cities who are harboring illegal immigrants. Judge Orrick noted only Congress, which holds the purse strings, can put such restrictions on federal spending. The Ninth Circuit covers nine western states and two U.S. territories.
While there is no legal definition of a “sanctuary city” essentially it refers to any city that has vowed to protect illegal immigrants from unfair persecution and targeting from federal immigration enforcement agencies.
Due to the sensitive subject of undocumented immigrants in the United States, elected officials in several major cities have made promises to immigrant communities that they will resist efforts by the federal or state governments to deport or otherwise interfere with the lives of immigrants living in America. While a legal definition has not yet been established, a sanctuary city essentially refers to any city that has vowed to protect, to some extent, the rights of undocumented and registered immigrants living within its boundaries. These cities have pledged to limit their cooperation with federal or state authorities, whether through rejecting the use of tax dollars for enforcing immigration law, or by establishing policies that specifically protect immigrants.
If you or someone you know has questions about immigration or sanctuary cities, contact a knowledgeable Georgia immigration law attorney right away.